Research Article  |   June 2019
Measuring Hand Dexterity in People With Parkinson’s Disease: Reliability of Pegboard Tests
Author Affiliations
  • Elizabeth L. Proud, PhD, is Online Tutor, Department of Physiotherapy, School of Health Sciences, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia; lproud@unimelb.edu.au
  • Belinda Bilney, PhD, is Associate Professor, School of Allied Health, Australian Catholic University, Ballarat, Victoria, Australia.
  • Kimberly J. Miller, PhD, is Senior Fellow, Department of Physiotherapy, School of Health Sciences, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, and Senior Leader, Clinical Education and Special Projects, Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
  • Meg E. Morris, PhD, is Professor, North Eastern Rehabilitation Centre, Healthscope and La Trobe Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine Research, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
  • Jennifer L. McGinley, PhD, is Associate Professor, Department of Physiotherapy, School of Health Sciences, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Article Information
Neurologic Conditions / Parkinson's Disease / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 2019
Measuring Hand Dexterity in People With Parkinson’s Disease: Reliability of Pegboard Tests
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 06 2019, Vol. 73, 7304205050p1-7304205050p8. doi:10.5014/ajot.2019.031112
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 06 2019, Vol. 73, 7304205050p1-7304205050p8. doi:10.5014/ajot.2019.031112
Abstract

Importance: Knowledge regarding the reliability of pegboard tests when used to measure dexterity in people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) is currently limited.

Objective: To examine the test–retest and interrater reliability of the 9-Hole Peg Test (9HPT) and Purdue Pegboard Test (PPT) in people with PD.

Design: Cross-sectional observational study. For test–retest reliability, tests were completed on 2 days, 1 wk apart, in the “on” phase and “end-of-dose” period of participants’ medication cycle. For interrater reliability, occupational therapists and physical therapists rated prerecorded pegboard test performance of participants with PD.

Setting: Test–retest reliability was determined in participants’ homes or in a university department. Interrater reliability was determined in a university department or a hospital setting.

Participants: Test–retest reliability was determined with volunteers diagnosed with PD (N = 30). Interrater reliability was determined with a convenience sample of occupational and physical therapists (N = 11).

Outcomes and Measures: The 9HPT and PPT are commonly used measures of manual dexterity.

Results: PPT subtests showed higher test–retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficients [ICCs] ≥ .90) in both phases of the medication cycle compared with the 9HPT (ICCs = .70–.81). Minimal detectable change scores indicated acceptable measurement error for both tools. Interrater reliability for recorded performance of each measure was very good (ICCs > .99), with no calculable measurement error.

Conclusions and Relevance: Although both tools showed adequate test–retest and interrater reliability, results suggest that the PPT may be a more reliable measure of dexterity loss in people with PD.

What This Article Adds: This study informs the clinical measurement of the loss of manual dexterity in people with PD, a frequent problem reported by people living with this disorder.